Tuesday, August 2, 2016: 8:30 AM-12:00 PM
231-232 (America's Center - St. Louis)
Primary Contact: Jarret Stopforth
Organizers: Jarret Stopforth , Mark Kreul and Dale Grinstead
Convenors: Jarret Stopforth and Caroline Smith DeWaalThere has been a rapidly growing consumer interest in food and beverage products and restaurant menu items featuring local ingredients. Consumers consider local and/or fresh ingredients in products to be associated with a higher quality product that supports small business and entrepreneurs with 52% of consumers stating that they view local as more important than organic in their purchasing decision. Aside from marketing appeal, food quality and safety concerns, transportation costs and local economic development efforts are compelling restaurants, groceries, and wholesalers to engage smaller producers and localize their supply chains. In turn, they are nurturing a “fresh food fast” procurement model that is growing from the ground up. The “source local” trend stems from the perception that the globalized food supply system involves importation of too many foods with little food safety oversight. However, even with the impetus to source local ingredients, there is an information gap on the challenges and risks associated within the diverse and complex commodity chain. Traceability, thorough food safety practices, and verification activities are some of the missing elements in many local and regional supply chains.
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